Shoyu Ramen with Pork Belly
Making homemade ramen, with noodles made from scratch, might seem daunting, but it’s actually much easier to do than you would guess, especially if you have a Philips Pasta Maker, which can be used to make ramen noodles. You’ll need to heat baking soda in the oven for an hour to make the baked soda, which gives the noodles their characteristic springy texture, but you can bake enough soda for several batches up to weeks in advance, so make some and keep it in the pantry for impromptu ramen dinners. You can also use purchased fresh ramen noodles, available in the refrigerator section of most Asian markets.
- For the pork belly:
- 2 Tbs. canola oil
- 1 lb. (500 g) skin-on pork belly
- 4 garlic cloves
- 1 Tbs. soy sauce
For the noodles:
- 1/4 cup (2 oz./60 g) baking soda
- 1 1/2 cups (7 1/1 oz./235 g) all-purpose flour
- 1 tsp. kosher salt
- 4 tsp. hot water
- 1 egg, beaten
- 2 Tbs. cold water
1 jar Shoyu Ramen Broth Starter, or 8 cups (64 fl. oz./2 l) homemade ramen broth
- 1/4 lb. (125 g) shimeji mushrooms
- 1/4 lb. (125 g) enoki mushrooms
- 2 soft-boiled eggs, peeled and halved lengthwise
- 2 green onions, white and light green portions, sliced on the diagonal
- 8 fresh cilantro sprigs
Preheat an oven to 350°F (180°C).
To prepare the pork belly, in a Dutch oven over medium heat, warm the oil. Add the pork belly, skin side down, and sear until the skin is crisp, about 4 minutes. Turn the pork skin side up and add enough water to the pot to cover the pork but not the skin. Add the garlic and soy sauce. Cover the pot, transfer to the oven and braise until the pork is fork-tender, about 2 hours. Remove the pork from the liquid and discard the liquid. Let the pork cool, then cut into slices about 1/2 inch (12 mm) thick. Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve.
Reduce the oven temperature to 250°F (120°C).
To make the noodles, spread the baking soda in a thin layer on a baking sheet. Transfer to the oven and bake for 1 hour. Remove from the oven and let cool.
In a bowl, stir together the flour and salt. Transfer to a Philips Pasta Maker fitted with the spaghetti die. Close the lid.
In a small bowl, stir together 1 tsp. of the baked soda and the hot water until the soda is dissolved. In a separate bowl, stir together the egg and cold water. Start the pasta machine. Pour in the baked soda mixture first, followed by the egg mixture.
While the noodles are being made, bring a large pot of water to a boil over high heat.
Add the noodles to the boiling water and cook until tender, 2 to 4 minutes. Drain the noodles and rinse under cold running water to rinse off the excess starch and keep them from sticking together. Set aside.
To assemble the dish, in a saucepan over medium heat, stir the broth starter into 7 cups (56 fl. oz./1.75 l) water. Alternatively, pour your homemade ramen broth in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add the shimeji mushrooms to the broth and bring to a simmer for 2 minutes.
Divide the cooked ramen noodles, the sliced pork and the broth with the shimeji among 4 bowls. Garnish each bowl with the enoki mushrooms, egg halves, green onions and cilantro. Serve immediately. Serves 4.
Williams-Sonoma Test Kitchen